1. Animation of Titan's Transit of the Crab Nebula (unlabeled)
On January 5, 2003, Titan crossed in front of the Crab Nebula, blocking some of X-rays emitted by the Crab. This animation illustrates how Titan, one of Saturn's moons, cast an X-ray "shadow" on Chandra's detector as Titan passed between the Crab Nebula and Chandra. This part of the animation shows how the event might look from the point of view of an observer watching the Chandra ACIS detector during the transit. This observer would not, of course, see the optical image of Titan, which is shown for reference. Although Titan passes within a few degrees of the Crab Nebula every 30 years, it rarely passes directly in front of it. This may have been the first transit of the Crab Nebula by Titan since the nebula was formed by a supernova that was observed to occur in the year 1054. The next similar conjunction will take place in the year 2267, so this was truly a once in a millennium event. The image of the Crab Nebula in the animation shows X-ray data in blue, optical in green, and radio in red.
(NASA/CXC/A.Hobart; Crab Nebula: X-ray: NASA/CXC/ASU/J.Hester et al.; Optical: NASA/HST/ASU/J.Hester et al.; Radio: NRAO/AUI/NSF; Titan's Shadow: NASA/CXC/Penn State/K.Mori et al.)
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